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Tuesday, 16 October 1956

Mr MENZIES (Kooyong) (Prime Minister) . - Before the House adjourns, I should like to make a short reference to the fact that our colleague, the VicePresident of the Executive Council (Sir Eric

Harrison), who was Leader of the House for some years and who has now been appointed High Commissioner for Australia in the United Kingdom, will, I understand, resign before the House resumes tomorrow. In the circumstances, I think I should take this opportunity to say to him. on behalf of all of us, I believe, a few words of goodwill and of good wishes in his new post.

The right honorable gentleman has been a member of this Parliament for the last 25 years. He has been at all times vigorous. He has at all times attended closely to the work of a member of the Parliament. He has at all times set a magnificent example of capacity and energy to all of us. I can speak of him, as a Minister, with great feeling. He has been a wonderful colleague. No man could have had a better colleague than he has been to me and to so many of us for so long.

He was the first occupant of the position of Leader of the House. Since his appointment to that position some years ago, he has, in the finest co-operation with the Deputy Leader of the Opposition the honorable member for Melbourne (Mr. Calwell), so organized the business of the House that, in my long experience of parliaments, I have never known business to run so well and bills to be completed with not necessarily fewer applications of the " guillotine " of the closure, but fewer long sittings and the irritations that arise from protracted and sometimes all-night sittings at the end of sessions. We are all indebted to him for the work that he has done in handling the business of the House as the Leader of the House.

I do not propose to occupy the time of honorable members very long by saying what I think of him as a man, because my view of him as a man is well known. I look back over a close association with him which leaves me, at the end of it, with an unmixed admiration for him. He is a true man of singular character and of great straightforwardness, as we all know - never concealing a view and never going round a corner to say what he might have said face to face. He is a man of utter integrity. I am sure that I speak- for all honorable members when I say that he carries with him our great respect, our affection and our good wishes.

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